Reviews

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme Gen 3 Review

LENOVO THINKPAD X1 EXTREME GEN 3
Written by Shehroz Butt

The best thing that Lenovo could offer is its ThinkPad X1 series. Then the company made its mind to pick things up with a larger 15.6-inch screen, a 45W CPU, and the dedicated graphics previously missing in the very series. That is when the ThinkPad X1 Extreme came into being. Except for the CPU and the GPU, this model is identical to the previous model. But now, the new model is armed with Intel Core i7 Comet Lake H processors and an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 Ti-Max GPU, 64GB of RAM, and 2TB NVMe SSD storage to make it laden with power. Despite a lack of changes, it is a good-looking device.

Along with being a powerful machine, our gaming laptop’s keyboard comes with is the best in its class. However, low battery life is something to be sacrificed. The following section will throw light on the design, specifications, and performance of this powerful machine.

Pros

  • Solid Build Quality
  • Great Keyboard and Touchpad
  • Excellent Performance

Cons

  • Expensive
The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme is packed with power with a comfortable keyboard and a robust software suite.

Design:

LENOVO THINKPAD X1 EXTREME GEN 3

Image by Amazon

Knowing that it is a ThinkPad, there is not much to say about the design. ThinkPad produces magnificent laptops. But for the most part, it is stuck to the legacy design and glued to legacy technology. The following sections thoroughly discuss the design.

• Display:

The 15.6-inch display makes this model the only one of its kind in the flagship X1 league and the biggest of any ThinkPad that does not come under the P-series umbrella. As always, options for UHD and FHD resolutions are there. Unfortunately, unlike the 14-inch ThinkPad X1, the QHD option that is the best combo between battery life and resolution is not available. The 4K multi-touch IPS display can become dimmer than competitors. Moreover, how glossy it makes this model suffer from low viewing angles. It does have a darker display because it’s coming with an average brightness of 338 nits, which is less compared to other 4K prosumer laptops such as the Surface Book 3 (402 nits) and the XPS 15 9500 (434 nits). However, it is near to the HP Envy 15 (329 nits). Even with that, the touchscreen display is nothing short of delightful. No matter what you are playing or watching, it looks rich, colorful, and gloriously detailed.

• Chassis:

Coming to the chassis, the review unit is identical to the last year’s model on the outer side. Since the chassis has not changed, the model at a glance is equipped with a carbon fiber lid. That enhances not only structural integrity but also makes its look striking. However, one thing that is unique to this model is the logo on the lid. The same black ThinkPad logo it comes with is reserved for premium devices. Aluminum is the bottom of the chassis.

Moreover, the keyboard deck, made of the usual ThinkPad soft-coated plastic, makes it suitable to use. Only in two flavors comes the body. One is the regular black, and the other is carbon fiber weave. Former is standard for ThinkPads, but the latter was once an option for high-end ThinkPads. Its all-black chassis has a few red accents, including the TrackPoint nubbin, the iconic blinking LED over the “I” in ThinkPad on the lid, and the edges of the TrackPoint buttons.

As the chassis is the same, the bezels are the same as well. The somewhat narrow side bezels give the feel of the previous design. Like earlier, the top bezel still consists of a webcam, an IR camera, and the ThinkShutter privacy guard.

Check it on Amazon

• Ports:

Except for the chassis, the port selection has been the same. You will find an AC power port, HDMI 2.0, two Thunderbolt 3 ports, and a 3.5mm audio jack on the left side. The Thunderbolt 3 ports can be used for charging, but it will charge slowly. The port selection includes two USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A ports and an SD card slot on the right side. The USB 3.2 Gen 1 helps transferring data at the speed of up to 5GB/s.

• Keyboard:

The high-end Lenovo ThinkPad X1 provide the best laptop keyboards, and the model under review also follows the same layout. However, the place of control and Fn keys have been switched with each other. The OLED display and inky blacks with vigorous colors make its keyboard out of the league. Moreover, the excellent travel distance and a nice tactile feel that its keyboard gives make typing comfortable on this backlit keyboard. Although the keys are distanced a little farther, yet its usage is perfectly responsive and pleasantly quiet. As a joy for clumsy users, it is spill-resistant.

• Trackpad:

Following the brand, this model keeps going with the same TrackPoint “nipple mouse” in the middle of the keyboard. Having TrackPad with it frees you from the burden of carrying an actual mouse with you. The glassy surface of the trackpad gives a nice feel. But its real estate is clouded by the dedicated buttons, which are unnecessary when you can tap or click on the trackpad. To sum up its function, it works just fine.

Specifications:

The design of our powerful model is given above. However, a complete picture of its specifications and technical detail is in the following section.

Screen resolution

1920*1080

Memory Speed

2933 MHz

Graphics Processor

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 Ti

Processor Count

6

Computer Memory Type

DDR4 SDRAM

Dimension

14.24*9.67*0.72 inch

Chipset Brand

NVIDIA

Check it on Amazon

Performance:

LENOVO THINKPAD X1 EXTREME GEN 3

Image by Amazon

How powerful this laptop is making everyone fall in love with this. With never shuttering for a moment, this high-speed laptop can handle multi-usage without breaking a sweat. Equipping with Core i7 and Windows 10 Pro helps it keep up multi-functioning at the same time. A combination of 10th Generation Intel Core i7 processor and 64GB of memory is up for any task even though processor-heavy activities such as playing multiple 4K videos, playing a sandbox explosion simulator video game, and editing photos in photoshop. With the configuration it comes with, the XPS 15 and the Spectre x360 15 are its competitors. The performance showed by our model is better than expected. This powerful machine performs better in the Geekbench 5 test than the Spectre x360 15 and almost similar to the XPS 15. Furthermore, our model is surprisingly close to the XPS 15 in the Handbrake test despite the latter arming with two four more threads and two more cores. However, it is faster than the Spectre x360 15.

• Gaming:

Except for its limited 60 Hz refresh rate, Lenovo Thinkpad X1 Extreme is sufficient for gaming. It can easily handle games and other similar tasks. Competing against the Spectre x360 15 and the XPS 15, this gaming laptop scores better than the former and a little less than the latter in the 3DMark Time Spy test. It performs better on real gaming than the model of its league by scoring 124 frames per second (fps) at 1080p at medium graphics and 68 FPS at ultra-graphics. Again, this powerful-cum-gaming model excels in its weight class.

• Battery life:

Battery life is its weak point. With full charging and in power-save mode, the battery lasts for a little less than eight hours. Thought battery stamina is moderately good, but not acceptable as one likes to see from a desktop replacement. In this regard, Apple and Dell do much better. That is the reason it falls short of the Dell XPS 17 in the PCMark 10 test.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

No, this model does not have an optical drive.
Depending upon workload and brightness, it can last for 6 to 8 hours.
Check it on Amazon

About the author

Shehroz Butt

Leave a Comment